Thailand to build its first cancer drug factory

Thailand will build its first factory for producing cancer-fighting drugs, including a full spectrum of medications and ingredients for the treatment of cancer, in an agreement signed last week with state energy firm PTT.

Cancer is among the highest cause of death in Thailand and around the world. Public health officials said the new facility would produce the needed pharmaceuticals used to treat cancer at prices at least 50 percent lower than those of imported medications.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul presided over the signing ceremony with Auttapol Rerkpiboon, PTT Chief Executive Officer. Government Pharmaceutical Organization (GPO) Director Dr. Witoon Danwiboon also attended the signing.

“This factory will have the capacity to produce 30 million units of chemotherapy drugs and 31 million units of biological drugs per year, with a focus on patents that will expire first,” Dr. Witoon said.

“Once there is enough for domestic use, we can boost our production capacity for export. This will make cancer drugs cheaper in the country and will also help push for them to be included in the national list of most-needed medications,” he said.

PTT said it would most likely build the manufacturing facility in Rayong province in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), the advanced higher-technology development hub in Thailand. Company executives said the plant would cost about $78 million with construction beginning in 2022 and lasting for 14 months.

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